Covid-19 – Alarming Spike

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Jammu and Kashmir witnessed highest single day spike in Covid-19 cases with 786 testing positive. The death toll due to the infection has already crossed 700. The scenario is frightening as there is no let up either in fresh cases of deaths due to Coronavirus. Though one would like to caution people not to panic but at the same time not taking the threat, posed by the deadly virus, seriously is not only suicidal but sort of mass murder. It is peoples’ responsibility to understand the threat and help in scuttling it. Government can’t go for locked-down for eternity as the people have to move out to work, work to earn and earn to live. That is why the restrictions have been eased. The people need to understand that in absence of official restrictions, the ball is solely in their own court. They need to understand that easing of restrictions doesn’t mean that the threat of the spread of virus has come down. No, in fact it has risen much more.

The reality of our times is that the virus may not go away and people will have to live with it. As suggested by World Health Organization’s emergencies chief, some time back, it is impossible to predict when the pandemic might be controlled as without a vaccine, it could take years for the population to build up sufficient levels of immunity to it and this virus may become just another endemic virus in our communities and like other previously novel diseases such as HIV it too may not disappear. However, there is a hope that effective treatment will be developed to allow people to live with the novel Coronavirus.

In this backdrop, the people need to accept the virus as a reality and as part of their everyday being. Sunday’s spike should awaken the people who have to take a serious note of this trend as it indicates that there is some sort of complacency and laxity on the part of the people in following the set precautionary measures. Stopping the virus even without medical interventions is possible and the trajectory of this outbreak is in the hands of the people. Once it is established that Coronavirus is here to stay, the people will have to seriously change their life styles. Physical distancing is to be made a permanent feature of human life. Wearing masks is to become a necessity and avoiding crowds is what everyone has to strive for. Covid-19 has created a new world with new norms and to save our lives and lives of others, we need to follow those norms strictly. People have to gear up to live in this new world where one more virus has been added to already existing infections. This new virus is more demanding and therefore people will have to follow the SOPs in letter and spirit.

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